United Airlines Flight 1463 was forced make an emergency landing early Sunday night when an evacuation slide inflated in the back of the cabin. The plane was traveling from Chicago to Santa Ana when it was diverted to Wichita after the incident.
The evacuation slide would normally be deployed outside of the plane after an emergency landing. The plane was at its cruising altitude when the slide inflated.
Many passengers abroad the flight flocked to Twitter to post pictures and tweets describing the ordeal. Passenger Taylor Martinez tweeted that it was the "scariest flight of all time". NBC 4 reported an account by passenger Mike Schroeder who heard a "hiss and a pop" and witnessed the slide fill the whole back area of the cabin.
None of the 96 passenger and five crew members were injured on the Boeing 737-700. The Federal Aviation Administration will conduct an investigation that according to their spokeswoman, Elizabeth Cory, could take weeks.
Has this happened before?
Although infrequent, here are a few other examples of this type of incident.
- While flying to Charlotte on a campaign stop in 2008, President Barack Obama's Midwest Airlines MD-81 plane made an emergency landingin St. Louis after an evacuation slide deployed in the cabin mid-flight.
- Last November,JetBlue Flight 1266 was diverted to Orlandoafter an evacuation slide inflated in the cabin.